I received free admission to Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey circus in exchange for a blog post for US Family Guide. All opinions expressed herein are my own.
I must warn you that this blog post will not do justice to The Greatest Show on Earth, but I will do my best to tell you and show you the wonder and amazement I experienced at the circus. I may be 28 years old, but I’m pretty positive that I was more excited than the children. Although, that’s not hard to judge when they fell asleep near the end. Granted, it started at 7pm on a weeknight and was almost 10pm by the time we left.
The theme “Built to Amaze” is obvious in each act, from painters outfits to construction scenes to fun with tools, including a screwdriver as a magician’s wand. I was experiencing sensory overload because so much is going on, but in a fantastic way. It all started with the ringmaster breaking out in song and different characters coming out and dancing. Now that I think about it, the circus is sort of like a live musical, only with lots of real animals and terrifying acts!
Coming back to the circus as an adult, I have a greater appreciation for all the artists. Their physical strength, men and women both, is astounding. I don’t know how they do some of the things they did with their bodies. There were two couples who were showing their strength by lifting each other in different positions. Then they had this contraption that spun around with two men inside. At one point, one acrobat got on the outside of the spinning thing and ran all over it as it spun. At some points he would jump and it looked like was flying or suspended in air, he even jumped rope while on it! But he always came back down and landed safely (if that’s possible) on the spinning wheel.
The tight rope walkers were also incredible, as they not only walked across the high wire, but leaped over others, jumped rope, rode bikes, and ran across the rope. Another of my favorite acts was the “basketball teams” on unicycles. They did things with the basketball on the unicycle that I can’t even do on my own two feet.
I have a love of tigers. I think they are just beautiful creatures and was very excited to see them. It is amazing how the trainer can direct them what to do with commands and they do exactly what he asks. There was also a dog act and they were full of energy! It was quite funny when the tiniest dog I’ve seen came out and started dancing around. They jumped over and under each other and ran all around. I asked little Lucy which part was her favorite after the show and she said “The dogs!” The elephants are equally amazing and probably the most anticipated animal of the show. It is truly awesome how such a large creature can be so gentle, move smoothly, and stand on a little platform with those huge feet.
Alex and Irina, the Ringmaster’s assistants, were great at getting the crowd excited and making us laugh. The venue was great for the circus as far as size goes. It wasn’t a huge venue, so wherever you sat had a great view. There were many vendors selling items for the kids, including flashy lights, toys, and snow cones with collector cups.
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey is performing at two locations in Colorado: Denver Coliseum, Oct. 3-6 and Pepsi Center, Oct. 9-13.